In the world of modeling there are many opportunities for you to be involved in some great projects. The Valley Model Meet & Greet is one of them. Organized by a group of photographers one night online the event is unlike any other I have seen or been apart of. It truly is one if those “to good to be true” things that really is true. A model will be made up and photographed by some of the valley’s finenest industry professionals at no cost. The reason behind it, how else are aspiring models going to get to find out about working with make up artists, hair stylists and photographers. It also allow the professionals a chance to work with each other, find new contacts and meet new faces and do some crazy stuff. The meet & greets can be very inspiring and a great chance to develop confidence for all involved.
While working with the group I was contacted by models under 18 who do not qualify for these meets, legally. They are truly understanding and are often just looking for direction or advise. I recommend they start a Model Mayhem account that allows them an online presents that they can build a network of local photographers and industry people to work with. This way they can be seen and also see what others have done. Anyone looking to model should know as many of the professionals as possible to develop a strong portfolio.
One such mode,l I will call her Jane, did just that. She loaded some photos that were taken by her friends and then proceeded to add contacts. Jane was doing well at getting things started. I had explained to her that eventually she would find people to work with her, but in the mean time she could ask questions. (most shooter will never shoot anyone under 18 without parental aproval)
Jane contacted me about a week after and told me she had been asked to model and when she spoke to her father about it, he said it was a scam and so she declined. Now here’s the thing! Jane was smart enough to seek advice from someone before she did anything. She did everything right! The photographer that contacted her was from out of town. (FALG)He stated that he wanted to shoot her for a magazine.(FLAG) He then went on to say that it would cost her $450.00!(RUN AWAY)
Jane’s dad was bang on! Photographers that work for magazines get paid to shoot. If a model is asked to pose for “ABC” magazine then, she should be compensated some how! I don’t care if it’s gift certificates or photos or makeup, anytime I shoot a model everyone knows what’s on the table. If a model comes to me, she pays! if I go to the model she gets the images to promote herself. TFP (time for prints) is the common term. We are exchanging our talents for mutual benefit.
Now Jane decided to ask me what I thought of the offer and I explained that if this shooter had any connection with the magazine he claimed to, then he would be paying her somehow. I went on to say that if at anytime she needed to qualify an offer, to please contact me or someone on the Meet & Greet site.. I would encourage any model to do the same! I have not met Jane in person but she trusts me to give her straight goods and I’m glad she did. I would hate to see anyone taking a chance without consulting someone they trust and making a mistake.
A person like this could easily be selling your photos to anyone (some out of country shady sight). The deal is no deal at all. The fact that you pay to be in magazine is nuts. Yes, shooters deserve the right to charge what they want for their services, but it sounds like this shooter is trying to have his cake and eat it too. There are many legit shooters out there with contacts to publishers and not all would be trying to scam. I too have a need for models when working with advertising clients but the conversation is never about how much the model is going to pay me.
For anyone looking to model please take some precautions to protect yourself. Every photographer I have met will ask you to have your parents sign the release, if you are under 18, in person! Anytime you pay for you’re photo shoot you decide what the style of the shoot will be. Now the photographer will retain the rights to the photo’s but you still let the shooter know what you are looking for. Never go to the first shoot alone and stay in your comfort zone! Here’s a tip any legit shooter will have a online presence, Facebook, website, contact, numbers and list of models they have worked with. Make sure you like the shooters work first and foremost. There no sense in have a photo of you out there that only looks good to the photographer. Check out the work and take a good look at the models he is using. Don’t just be flattered by the offer. I have no doubt that Jane has a good chance of appearing in a magazine but not based on the photos her friends took. Take the time to understand who you are shooting with. Protect yourself and just say no until you can investigate the details.
If anyone else has had this offer or something similar please let me know!